Most people will know Gerard Depardieu as that actor with the strong French accent. From his roles as an illegal immigrant in Green Card to the powerful Gaul Obelix in Asterix & Obelix the Frenchman always delivered a more than decent performance. With dozens of top movies on his name few people would suspect that the actor, who was born in 1948, is actually a major drinker. In a shocking interview with the British newspaper the Daily Mirror in September 2014 he claims he can drink up to 14 bottles of wine a day and still not get drunk. Adding to this impressive numbers: “When I’m bored, I drink.”
Besides his many movies Depardieu was already known as a true epicurean. In that way he seemed a typical French guy with a big love for good food and wine. For a reason he also owns his own restaurant and vineyard. After his bypass operation in 2000 doctors adviced Depardieu to change his diet, which he refused to do. In the past there were some incidents. The French actor was found guilty of drunken driving twice and once for urinating in an airplane while intoxicated. Still his revelations about his alcohol consumption in the Daily Mirror surprised many people. From here on we will let Monsieur Depardieu do the honors and tell you about his life himself.
“When I’m bored, I drink. Apart from compulsory moments of abstinence. After bypass surgery, and also because of cholesterol and stuff, I have to be careful… Anyway, I’m not going to die. Not now. I still have energy. But if ever I start drinking I can’t drink like a normal person. I can absorb 12, 13, 14 bottles per day… (Before my heart operation) I was asked to tell the doctor about my consumption. So I said, ‘Here it goes’. It starts at home with Champagne or red wine, before 10 am. Then again Champagne. Then pastis, maybe half a bottle. Then food, accompanied by two bottles of wine. In the afternoon, Champagne, beer, and more pastis at around 5 pm, to finish off the bottle. Later on vodka and/or whisky. But I’m never totally drunk, just a little pissed. All you need is a 10-minute nap and voila, a slurp of rose wine and I feel as fresh as a daisy.”
“What I like in being drunk is the moment when you’re alive and enthusiastic. Full stop. But when you have been there 10, 15, 20 times, 30 times, then you start losing track. There’s more to life than being drunk.”
Still the French actor has no problem going through life constantly buzzed. His extreme alcohol consumption doesn’t seem to slow him down in everything he does. As a successful actor, moviemaker and entrepreneur he became a selfmade millionair. The amount of money on his bank account even made him take on the Russian nationality in 2013 to escape new tax laws in France. An interesting choice of country for someone who likes a good drink. Anyway, Depardieu proved like no other in this day and age that heavy drinkers can be extremely successful.